Amid black flag protests by Opposition parties for his government's alleged anti-Tamil Nadu policies, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday laid the foundation stone of AIIMS hospital in Madurai. Besides, the prime minister also inaugurated super-specialty blocks at medical colleges in Rajaji, Thanjavur and Tirunelveli. Speaking after the event, he said, "The NDA govt is giving great priority to the health sector so that everyone is healthy and the health care is affordable... Today I am happy to inaugurate the super-specialty hospitals in Madurai, Thanjavur and Tirunelveli."
Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the foundation stone laying ceremony of AIIMS in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. (Photo: ANI)
The proposed 750-bed modern AIIMS here, on its completion, will also offer 100 MBBS seats. Chief Minister K Palaniswami thanked the Prime Minister for providing the AIIMS facility to Tamil Nadu and urged upon the Centre to set up a medical college at the backward Ramanathapuram district.
Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam said AIIMS in Madurai would greatly benefit the people of southern backward districts of Tamil Nadu adding all necessary infrastructure will be developed in the region. The Madurai AIIMS was given union cabinet approval in December 2018.
Earlier, the prime minister was shown black flags upon his arrival in Madurai. Protesters-led by Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) chief Vaiko held placards and shouted slogans of "Modi Go Back". On Saturday, accusing the prime minister of "ignoring" Tamil Nadu’s interests, Variko had announced a black flag demonstration against the prime minister. He accused the Centre of functioning against the interests of the state and clarified that the protest was against Modi and his government not against the AIIMS hospital.
MDMK chief Vaiko, others protesting against PM Modi's Tamil Nadu visit in Madurai. (ANI Photo)